America’s Manufacturing Sector: Good, Bad or Somewhere in Between?

The manufacturing industry in the US has gotten a bad rep over the last few years.  On and off.  It’s hard to determine where it stands today but in this article we will take a look at some of the more accurate indicators.

From around June 2019, a recessional atmosphere occurred in the industry.  But that turned around in January according to a report from the Institute of Supply Management.  The report showed a jump in purchasing manufacturing index to 50.9 – even higher than predictions of 48.5.  According to NY’s ING’s Chief Economic Strategist, James Knightly:

“It seems likely that the phase one trade deal with China has generated a positive lift for the sector by giving some certainty that there will be no more tariffs, at least in the near term.”

Furthermore, it is believed that 2020 will “likely be a better year for US manufacturers,” due to the stabilization of international growth and the light at the end of the tunnel for domestic economic activity.

On the other hand, Anneken Tappe of CNN Business would have us believe that “America’s manufacturing sector is in a recession.”  But, she adds, “that is only part of the story,” and illustrates how two factors are at play here: the expansion of factories and their recession. In 2008, the manufacturing industry began its road to recovery, adding around 1.4 million jobs. But still, it has been dipping for the last 40 years.  

So that’s the current summary of the good and bad in America’s manufacturing sector.